Who May Draw From The Well?

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The Deeper Truths of Jesus: The Gospel According to John (1-4:42)



John 4:1-26

Cody John Simpson


    • The church, as the community of Jesus followers, it should be pretty obvious that we need to find Jesus’ example to figure this out.
  • John 4:1-12
    • The major context of this whole interaction is the division between Jews and Samaritans.
      • The woman is shocked that Jesus would ask her for water because of her ethnicity/religion (v8).
      • Samaritans were an ethnic and religious mix of Jews from the Northern Kingdom and implanted peoples from the Assyrian period. They were considered unclean heretics by the Jews.
    • But here we are nonetheless, Jesus asking for a drink from this “unclean” woman. But then it gets more interesting. Jesus turns it around and offers her water. 
      • The living water Jesus offers could be understood as flowing water from a spring, which is why she is confused. 
    • As Jesus continues it becomes clear He isn’t talking about literal water. This water leads to eternal life: 
    • John 4:13-18
    • Whatever she might understand about this eternal life giving water, she certainly exhibits a great need. Do we see that? She needs help and she knows it. At this point Jesus confronts her.
    • Jesus, in His Divine knowledge, knows this woman’s past. 
      • Her immoral history with men (we don’t know why she had 5 husbands, but she definitely shouldn’t be with the current man unmarried). We notice too that she comes to draw water when everyone else from town is at home – she is a social outcast. 
      • She doesn’t really respond to Jesus about this in the text here, but we see in v39 that she admits “Jesus knows everything I ever did.”
    • So in the eyes of Jesus’ people, this woman is essentially the last person Jesus should be engaging with. Yet He doesn’t just engage, He invites.
  • John 4:19-26 – it’s not quite finished:
  • The woman jumps back into the question of distinctions. Don’t we all? Even the outcasts cast out others: whose worship is correct? Which group is in and which group is out?
  • Jesus is creating a new community that breaks through our human social boundaries. This new group worships in Spirit and truth (through Jesus who is the true word of God).
    • Spirit – Through the Spirit that is given by God. The Worshipful relationship with God is created and maintained by the Holy Spirit.
    • Truth – This worshipful relationship is mediated through Jesus Himself. Jesus is the TRUE revelation of God (1:14; 3:21,23). It is through faith in the death and resurrection of Jesus that one can have a relationship with God. 
    • The living water that Jesus is offering to this woman is nothing short than the eternal living relationship with God. 
  • I think as we step back from this as a church the question that should come up is “are we living the Jesus way here?” 
    • Are we a church that opens its community up to everyone who is looking to be restored and follow Jesus? We might easily say yes, but realize that in many church communities the woman at the well would have been scorned, people expecting a complete overhaul of who she is the moment she walks in the door. 
    • Instead Jesus shows us that we need to come alongside others and each other as we all pursue Christlikeness and to live in holiness. Its a lifelong journey., and all, no matter the social background or moral history matters. 
  • I think we all have secrets and sins that make us feel we’d be outcasts. Let us acknowledge what God has forgiven in us, be vulnerable about that and in humility love one another too.


Do you feel like an outcast? Turn to God who will never reject you and loves you at your worst.

Who would you struggle to welcome into community? Ask God to remove this hardness of heart through the humble example of Jesus.